A Tiny House Experience

Last Monday was mine and Christine's 7 year wedding anniversary, so to celebrate we decided to have a night away from the kids, the first since Ben was born almost two years ago. We knew we wanted to go down to the beach but with it being in season, prices were a little much for what we wanted. So we jumped on Airbnb to look for some alternatives and found a tiny house listed on a farm about 10 minutes from Bethany Beach. Once we saw the pictures, we were sold.

You've probably seen one of the many tiny house shows on TV, or at least the advertisements for them. In them, people are either buying or building a tiny house to live in for whatever reason. Many times its younger people who aren't looking to settle down in a specific place or don't want the burden of paying rent or having a huge monthly mortgage payment. A lot of times the houses are built up on trailer bases so they can be towed from place to place but that's not always the case. Sometimes they're built on a piece of land that already has a house on it. They can be uses as a guest house, a creative space to write or paint, a hangout for the kids, or any number of possibilities. The tiny house we stayed in was in the latter category. 

Nestled behind a large garden that hosts weddings and next to a large green house sits the tiny house at Good Earth Market and Organic Farm. What used to be a potting shed has been transformed into a rent-able space for less than $200 a night after fees. At only 165 square feet inside, you'd think the space would be cramped but it felt very big. The tall ceiling, smart use of space, number of windows, dual skylights, and light decor colors really made the space feel much bigger than it was. The deck off the side of the house was a nice place to sit and enjoy the calm surroundings of the farm. Susan, the owner of Good Earth Market and Organic Farm, did an amazing job creating this space. 

There are some pictures below but here's a little bit about each "room":
  • The bathroom was larger than some apartment bathrooms we've had and the on demand hot water was a nice touch. Susan thought having a nice bathroom would be very important to her guests so she wanted it to be a real feature.
  • Even though we didn't use the kitchen for anything, there was a lot of counter space for the size and the ample shelving would have been very helpful if we were staying there for any extended period of time. The small fridge and freezer was big enough to hold pretty much everything we have in ours at home. There was even a tiny four burner stove that I could see baking a pie in and setting it out on the window sill, that leads out to the deck, to cool.
  • The "living room" consisted of a futon and table that are underneath the loft where the bed sits. The table uses an eye and hook system to lift up so the futon can be positioned into an additional bed. We used the space to play a couple of smaller board games and felt like we had just enough space for that. Above the door was a flat screen TV that has internet capabilities and access to their Netflix account. The view from the bed was better.
  • The "bedroom" is the loft space that is accessed by taking the stairs that double as a storage center. A queen sized Tuft & Needle mattress was very comfortable and there were a few inches of space between the mattress and each wall and the railing. A small rectangular window with a sill had enough space to hold a few things like an tiny alarm clock and a water bottle. If this were a permanent living situation, a small shelf would be better.
We really enjoyed our stay and would definitely stay there again. One of the things I loved the most was that it was so quiet because it's away from the hustle and bustle of the beach resorts. There's no traffic to hear, no screaming kids, or doors opening and closing at all hours of the night. But the thing I can't stop thinking about is how efficient the whole idea of a tiny house is and how I can definitely see the appeal of living that way.

It would be incredibly tough to live in such a small space with just one kid but with three? Forget about it. Even if the space was two or even three times as large, with 5 people and two cats, things would start feeling pretty tight, pretty quickly. But the very limited experience of staying in that tiny space really made me think about the amount of space we have now (approximately 2000 sq ft) and wonder if we really need it all. Don't get me wrong, having ample space for the kids and for when we have people over is great and all but I could see us living in a smaller space that forces us to have less stuff. That's another thing that's been on my mind, owning less stuff, as I've mentioned in a couple other posts. Maybe this tiny house experience will help lead us towards a "better" way of living.


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